Education and early career
Nahmias grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, where he attended Briarcliff High School and was the state’s STAR student. He attended Duke University, where he graduated second in his class and summa cum laude, and Harvard Law School, where he graduated magna cum laude and was an editor of the Harvard Law Review. He then clerked for Judge Laurence H. Silberman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia and Justice Antonin Scalia of the Supreme Court of the United States.
After practicing with the law firm of Hogan & Hartson in Washington, D.C., Nahmias joined the U.S. Attorney's Office in Atlanta in January 1995. He initially handled a number of armed robbery, firearms, arson, and explosives cases, and worked extensively on the investigation of the Centennial Olympic Park and subsequent bombings that resulted in the indictment of Eric Robert Rudolph. Nahmias then worked in the Fraud and Public Corruption Section, where he successfully prosecuted a Georgia State Senator on corruption charges and several personal injury lawyers and chiropractors on tax and fraud charges, and served as the co-lead prosecutor on a major investigation of public corruption in the City of Atlanta and Fulton County governments. His work in Atlanta was recognized in 2002 with the Director’s Award for Superior Performance by an Assistant U.S. Attorney.
Beginning in late October 2001, Nahmias was detailed to the United States Department of Justice Criminal Division in Washington to serve as Counsel to the Assistant Attorney General. In that capacity, Nahmias coordinated the investigations and prosecutions of Al Qaeda and other terrorist activity around the United States and in numerous foreign countries, assisted in counterterrorism policy-making, and served as a DOJ liaison to other Federal agencies on terrorism-related issues. On August 1, 2003, Nahmias was appointed as a Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Criminal Division, responsible for supervision of the Counterterrorism Section; the Fraud Section, which handles policy and litigation matters including corporate, securities, and health care fraud cases and the Enron Task Force; the Appellate Section; and the Capital Case Unit.
After being nominated by the President and confirmed by the United States Senate, on December 1, 2004, Nahmias returned home to Atlanta to take office as the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia. He served as the chief federal law enforcement officer in the district and managed an office with approximately 75 lawyers who represent the United States in all criminal and civil litigation in federal court in the district. In January 2005, Nahmias was appointed to serve on the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee of United State Attorneys (AGAC), which reviews and recommends policies for federal prosecutors nationwide. The Attorney General also appointed Nahmias as Chairman of two of the AGAC’s most important subcommittees: Terrorism and National Security (September 2005-October 2007) and White Collar Crime (October 2007-2009).
Nahmias was named to the Supreme Court of Georgia by Governor Sonny Perdue on August 13, 2009, to fill the vacancy left by the resignation of Leah Ward Sears. He took office on Sept. 3, 2009 and won re-election in November 2010.